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Dominican Republic "will become a sort of Puerto Rico" under CAFTA

Dr. Emilio Cordero Michel, Vice President of the Dominican Academy of Sciences and a respected economist and historian, warned attendees of a panel discussion held on March 17, 2007 that the Dominican Republic would quickly find itself "with poverty and problems that we will never be able to solve”.

The warning came amid wild speculation by the country's President who hailed the the signing of the CAFTA agreement as the beginning of a road to competitiveness with the rest of the world. Dr. Cordero Michele however believes that CAFTA will only turn the Dominican Republic into another Puerto Rico. He said, "This means we will become a sort of Puerto Rico with a flag, coat of arms and anthem, but a sub-colony, producing only Free Trade Zones".

The Dominican Customs Agency announced on April 8th that although custom collections were on the rise thanks to CAFTA, there was a total income loss of RD$34,206,434.16 (that's in Dominican Pesos)for the first quarter of 2007(January -March) due to the loss of import tariffs.

Sources: Dominican Today [1] [2]

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